Honestly, Morbius Doesn’t Suck
When Sony/Columbia/Marvel released Morbius earlier this year, there were a ton of poor reviews about the film. Critics and fans alike bashed the origin story saying that it was just another generic superhero movie. They accused it of everything from having a paper-thin plot and dull characters to bad CGI and direction. Then there were folks like this guy who pulled out every ten dollar word that they could come up with to drive home the point of just how much this film sucked. Memes making fun of the film apparently drove Sony to erroneously re-release the movie because they thought that people enjoyed the movie. Yep, the cool kids pulled a fast one on Sony and the critics proved that they had a superior vocabulary.
Me? I don’t get any of the hate…..none of it.
Was the film really that bad? No, it wasn’t. I’m not saying that it was perfect or worthy of an award, but it wasn’t “lifeless,” “toothless,” “soulless,” “Frankensteined,” or “input generic horror/vampire/Universal Monsters reference here.” It was just okay. It was a standard comic book origin story where we get a little bit of background on the hero and the villain, witness the moment that both are “created,” and then see them square off in a CGI-laden battle to finish the film.
Despite the generic plot, director Daniel Espinosa manages to move it all along at a nice clip that doesn’t get boring. He breezes through Dr. Morbius’ youth, establishes our soon-to-be-bloodsucker as a sympathetic character, and then tosses the villain in at just the right moment to keep the pace on the high end. Jared Leto (Morbius), Adria Arjona (Dr. Bancroft), Jared Harris (Dr. Nicholas), and Tyrese Gibson (Stroud) all give solid performances. Al Madrigal (Rodriguez) injects just a hint of humor into the film. Matt Smith hams it up big time as Milo/Lucien, also injecting a little humor into an otherwise serious film.
The CGI was obvious at many points in the film, but thanks to the primarily dark scenes, it doesn’t stick out as poorly as it does in films like Avengers: Endgame or any recent Marvel offerings. It didn’t bother me when the CGI was noticeable. I especially enjoyed how the CGI was used with Morbius’ movements (streamer-styled trails behind him while he was in motion) and his echolocation power. I also really, really loved the music for the film composed by Jon Ekstrand. It’s some of the best music for a Marvel property that I’ve heard in a long time.
As I already mentioned, the film is pretty generic for a superhero movie and this definitely hurts it overall. Milo is something of a thin villain and his final battle with Morbius ends on a soft note, but he provides our hero with the catalyst he needs to become the “good guy” despite being a bloodthirsty monster. There are a few misfires plotwise such as the fact that Dr. Morbius has lunch in public and freely walks around the city despite having his face plastered all over the news as being wanted for murder. There are also plenty of throw away characters in the film who are used for nothing more than to build a body count. I also wish that the film went for an “R” rating instead of “PG-13,” as there was almost no blood or gore in the film.
Morbius isn’t perfect. It isn’t terrible, either. If that means I’m not one of the cool kids because I won’t bash the film then I guess I’m not one of the cool kids. That’s okay, I’ve never been one of the cool kids to begin with, so I’m pretty sure that I’ll survive just fine. Heck, I’ll even go so far as to say that I enjoyed this film more than Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness. It had more genuine horror elements in it that weren’t forced and a more believable villain. It also had a much needed serious tone, which is something that has been missing from the MCU for far too long. Also, the supposedly confusing mid-credits scenes weren’t that bad. All they do is establish the fact that the multiverse exists in Morbius’ world and he may or may not get to team up with one of the MCU’s best villains in Vulture. If you’re confused by that, you’ve got a long and difficult journey in front of you with the MCU.
To drive home the point that Morbius isn’t as bad as the naysayers want you to believe, it’s currently the number one film on Netflix. Why? Perhaps morbid curiosity is driving streamers to watch the film? Maybe they wanted to see the film in theaters but decided against it due to the poor reviews? COVID-19 might have kept many would-be filmgoers from checking it out at the cinema because they deemed the film unworthy of potential exposure to the virus? No matter the reason, Morbius is finally finding an audience, and I hope to see him back on the big screen in another film either as a villain or a hero.
Thanks for reading my post. I’m sure that there are plenty of you that disagree with me on this film, so let me have it in the comments section. See you again real soon!